Here Comes Biometric Marketing

iStock_Multi-Modal-300x225We’re about to enter an age of biometric marketing, says Cavan Canavan in an article on TechCrunch. Canavan, a co-founder of motion-tracking tech developer FocusMotion, argues that the biometric technology poised to be included in the coming wave of wearable tech will allow companies to monitor not only users’ physical well-being, but the physiological signals of their emotional state as well, thereby allowing the deployment of marketing catered towards certain emotional states. “Companies will no longer be bidding on Jennifer,” he writes, “but instead on Happy Jennifer or Sad Jennifer or whatever emotional state aligns best with their product offering.”

It might sound like a chilling prospect, or simply the natural evolution of biometric technology, depending on your disposition, but in any case, if you’ve been following the progress of biometric technology over the last little while, Canavan’s argument certainly has the ring of truth to it. Wearable biometric fitness-tracking devices have been getting increasingly sophisticated, with the latest iterations able to monitor minute details such as bioimpedance measures. Meanwhile, the field of wearable tech is blossoming, with biometric technology now appearing on a wide variety of personal devices, including Apple’s ubiquitous smartphones. As Canavan notes, there could be as many as 285 million wearable fitness-tracking devices by 2018, and smart watch sales could increase from last year’s one million to 92 million in 2018.
It’s therefore pretty easy to imagine a large segment of society wearing biometric devices on a daily basis in the very near future, and if that does indeed turn out to be the case, there’s no question that marketers will try to find some advantage in it, as they always do.